Last week I presented you with a pretty easy fossil, but in my defense you haven’t been the quickest in identifying plants in the past…
But no doubt you guessed pretty quickly this specimen was from the genus Acer (AKA a maple of some sort). Which is spot on. It’s actually of the species oregonium. These winged fruit most likely dispersed back in the Miocene—as they do now—spiraling down from trees and getting a little lift from the wind. Those of you in the Northeast are no doubt enjoying the fall tap from a relative of this species, the sugar maple. If you are feeling generous, feel free to send a bottle of that sweet sap to Fossil headquarters here in Oakland!
Thanks again for playing. Stay tuned for more fossil fun this week!